The Absolute Best Herbal Bug Bite Remedy

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As the warm weather beckons us outdoors, the pesky presence of bugs becomes an inevitable part of the experience. Whether it’s mosquitoes, bees, or other buzzing nuisances, their unwelcome bites can leave us scratching and seeking a bug bite remedy, and quick! While there are numerous over-the-counter remedies available, many people are turning to nature’s own healing powers to soothe and treat bug bites.

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A herbal bug bite remedy can offer a gentle and effective alternative, harnessing the therapeutic properties of various plant-based ingredients. From herbs and essential oils to common household items, these remedies provide relief without the use of harsh chemicals or additives.

The recipe below (which my daughter appropriately named ‘buggy bites’ when she was 3 years old) is loaded with amazing herbs that will take down swelling and inflammation, redness, burning, and itching in a matter of minutes! Get ready to unlock the secrets of nature’s bountiful pharmacy and discover the wonders of this natural bug bite remedy.

Medicinal Herbs To Help Bug Bites

Comfrey

Comfrey is a plant that has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. It contains compounds that have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, which can help to reduce swelling, itching, and pain associated with bug bites. The two main classes of compounds found in comfrey that are responsible for its medicinal properties are allantoin and rosmarinic acid.

Allantoin is a compound that is known to promote the growth of new skin cells and accelerate the healing process. It also has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, which can help to reduce pain and inflammation associated with bug bites and other skin conditions.

Rosmarinic acid is a polyphenol that has been found to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and analgesic properties. It is thought to work by blocking the production of inflammatory molecules and reducing oxidative stress in the body.

Other compounds found in comfrey, such as tannins and mucilage, may also contribute to its medicinal properties by providing a protective and soothing effect on the skin.

To craft a healing salve with all the benefits of comfrey, check out this recipe for Comfrey Salve.

Plantain

natural bug bite relief

Broad leaf plantain (Plantago major) is a common herbaceous plant that has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. It is known for its anti-inflammatory, antihistamine, and astringent properties, which make it a popular natural remedy for bug bites.

The anti-inflammatory properties of broad leaf plantain can help to reduce swelling and redness associated with bug bites, while its antihistamine properties can help to relieve itching. Its astringent properties can help to tighten and soothe the skin, reducing the risk of infection.

Broad leaf plantain contains several bioactive compounds that are responsible for its medicinal properties, including aucubin, allantoin, and mucilage. Aucubin is an anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial compound that can help to reduce swelling and prevent infection. Allantoin is a compound that promotes tissue regeneration and can accelerate the healing process. Mucilage is a natural demulcent that can help to soothe and protect irritated skin.

Peppermint

Peppermint is a popular herb used for its medicinal and culinary properties. It contains several compounds that give it its therapeutic properties, including menthol, rosmarinic acid, and flavonoids. Peppermint is known for its cooling and soothing effect on the skin, which can help to reduce itching, swelling, and pain associated with bug bites.

The menthol in peppermint has a cooling effect on the skin, which can help to reduce itching and provide a numbing effect to relieve pain. Rosmarinic acid, a polyphenol found in peppermint, has anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce swelling and redness associated with bug bites. Flavonoids, another group of compounds found in peppermint, have antioxidant properties that can help to protect the skin from damage.

Aloe Vera

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Aloe vera is a popular natural remedy for bug bites due to its cooling and anti-inflammatory properties. When applied topically, aloe vera gel can help to reduce itching, swelling, and pain associated with bug bites.

Aloe vera contains several bioactive compounds that are responsible for its medicinal properties, including polysaccharides, glycoproteins, and anthraquinones. Polysaccharides, in particular, have been found to have anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects, which can help to reduce swelling and inflammation and promote healing.

Check out all the Medicinal Benefits of Aloe Vera!

Rose Petals

Rose petals have soothing and anti-inflammatory properties that can help provide relief for bug bites. Here’s how rose petals can help:

  • Cooling effect: Rose petals have a natural cooling effect on the skin, which can help soothe the itching and irritation caused by bug bites. Applying crushed rose petals or rose petal-infused water to the affected area can provide immediate relief.
  • Anti-inflammatory properties: Rose petals contain compounds that possess anti-inflammatory properties. These compounds help reduce redness, swelling, and inflammation associated with bug bites, promoting a faster healing process.
  • Mild analgesic effect: The natural compounds in rose petals can act as mild analgesics, helping to alleviate the pain or discomfort caused by bug bites. The gentle numbing sensation can provide temporary relief from the bite’s soreness.
  • Moisturizing and hydrating properties: Rose petals are rich in natural oils, which have moisturizing and hydrating effects on the skin. Applying crushed rose petals or rose petal-infused oils can help keep the skin moisturized and prevent dryness or flakiness around the bug bite area.

Calendula

Calendula is a herb that has been used for its powerful healing abilities. It is known for its anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and wound-healing properties, which make it a popular natural remedy for bug bites.

Calendula contains several bioactive compounds that are responsible for its medicinal properties, including flavonoids, triterpenoids, and carotenoids. Flavonoids have anti-inflammatory properties and can help to reduce swelling and redness associated with bug bites. Triterpenoids have antiseptic properties and can help to prevent infection. Carotenoids have antioxidant properties and can help to protect the skin from damage.

Chamomile

Chamomile offers multiple benefits for bug bites. Its anti-inflammatory properties, thanks to compounds like bisabolol and chamazulene, can reduce redness, swelling, and inflammation when applied topically. Additionally, chamomile has a calming effect on the skin, soothing itching and irritation caused by bug bites. Its mild anti-itch properties help alleviate the urge to scratch, preventing further discomfort and potential infection. With its natural antiseptic properties and antimicrobial activity, chamomile creates a clean and healing environment, safeguarding against infection.

Yarrow

Yarrow offers a range of benefits for bug bites. Its anti-inflammatory properties, derived from compounds like flavonoids and sesquiterpene lactones, help diminish inflammation, redness, and swelling when applied to bug bites. Additionally, yarrow provides mild analgesic effects, relieving pain and discomfort associated with bites while delivering a soothing sensation that alleviates itching or stinging. With its natural antiseptic properties, yarrow acts as a protective barrier against infection, as its antimicrobial activity inhibits the growth of harmful microorganisms. Furthermore, yarrow promotes wound healing and tissue repair, thanks to its compounds that support the recovery process. The astringent properties of yarrow contribute to tightening and toning the skin, reducing swelling, constricting blood vessels, and facilitating healing when applied to bug bites.

bug bite balm

Helping Oils For Bug Bite Salve

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is a natural remedy that can help to soothe and heal bug bites. It has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and moisturizing properties that can help to reduce inflammation, prevent infection, and moisturize the skin.

Coconut oil contains several fatty acids that are responsible for its therapeutic properties, including lauric acid, capric acid, and caprylic acid. These fatty acids have been shown to have antibacterial and antifungal properties, which can help to prevent infection and promote healing.

Coconut oil also contains vitamin E, which is a natural antioxidant that can help to protect the skin from damage. Vitamin E can help to reduce inflammation and promote healing by increasing collagen production.

Olive Oil

Olive oil is a natural remedy that can help to soothe and heal bug bites. It has anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties that can help to reduce inflammation, soothe itching, and moisturize the skin.

Olive oil contains several fatty acids that are responsible for its therapeutic properties, including oleic acid, linoleic acid, and palmitic acid. These fatty acids can help to reduce inflammation and soothe itching by providing moisture to the skin.

Olive oil also contains antioxidants, such as polyphenols and vitamin E, which can help to protect the skin from damage and promote healing. Polyphenols have anti-inflammatory properties and can help to reduce inflammation and redness associated with bug bites. Vitamin E can help to reduce inflammation and promote healing by increasing collagen production.

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Essential Oils For Sting & Itch

Tea Tree

Tea tree essential oil is a natural remedy that can help to soothe and heal bug bites. Tea tree essential oil contains several compounds that are responsible for its therapeutic properties, including terpinen-4-ol, alpha-terpineol, and gamma-terpinene. These compounds have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antifungal properties, which can help to reduce inflammation, prevent infection, and promote healing.

Lavender

Lavender essential oil is a natural remedy that can help to soothe and heal bug bites. Lavender essential oil contains several compounds that are responsible for its therapeutic properties, including linalool, linalyl acetate, and eucalyptol. These compounds have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and analgesic properties, which can help to reduce inflammation, prevent infection, and relieve pain and itching.

Rosemary

Rosemary essential oil contains several compounds that are responsible for its therapeutic properties, including camphor, 1,8-cineole, and alpha-pinene. These compounds have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antiseptic properties, which can help to reduce inflammation, relieve pain, and prevent infection.

Rosemary essential oil is generally considered safe for topical use when diluted properly, but it can be irritating to some people when used undiluted. It’s always a good idea to do a patch test before using rosemary essential oil or any other natural remedy, especially if you have sensitive skin or a history of allergic reactions.

Peppermint

Peppermint essential oil can provide relief for bug bites due to its soothing, cooling, and anti-inflammatory properties. Here’s how peppermint essential oil can be beneficial:

  • Cooling sensation: Peppermint essential oil contains menthol, which provides a cooling sensation when applied to the skin. This cooling effect helps to alleviate the itching and discomfort associated with bug bites.
  • Anti-inflammatory properties: Peppermint essential oil has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce swelling and redness caused by bug bites. It can help to calm the skin and minimize the inflammatory response.
  • Analgesic effect: The menthol in peppermint essential oil acts as a natural analgesic, providing pain relief for bug bites. It can help numb the area and reduce the sensation of pain or discomfort.
  • Antimicrobial activity: Peppermint essential oil has antimicrobial properties, which can help prevent infection in bug bites. By inhibiting the growth of bacteria or other microorganisms, it supports the healing process and reduces the risk of secondary infections.
tea tree essential oil for bug bites
TEA TREE ESSENTIAL OIL

lavender essential oil for bug bites
LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL

rosemary essential oil for bug bites
ROSEMARY ESSENTIAL OIL

peppermint essential oil for bug bites
PEPPERMINT ORGANIC ESSENTIAL OIL

Chamomile

Chamomile essential oil is known for its soothing and calming properties, making it beneficial for bug bites. Here’s how chamomile essential oil can help:

  • Anti-inflammatory effects: Chamomile essential oil contains compounds such as bisabolol and chamazulene that exhibit anti-inflammatory properties. When applied to bug bites, it can help reduce inflammation, redness, and swelling, providing relief from discomfort.
  • Soothing and calming: Chamomile essential oil has a gentle and calming effect on the skin. It can help alleviate the itchiness and irritation caused by bug bites, providing a soothing sensation.
  • Anti-itch properties: The anti-itch properties of chamomile essential oil can help reduce the urge to scratch bug bites, preventing further skin damage and potential infection.
  • Antimicrobial activity: Chamomile essential oil possesses antimicrobial properties that can help prevent infection in bug bites. It can inhibit the growth of bacteria and other microorganisms, promoting a clean healing environment.

Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus essential oil can be beneficial for bug bites due to its cooling, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties. Here’s how eucalyptus essential oil can help:

  • Cooling sensation: Eucalyptus essential oil provides a cooling sensation when applied to the skin, which can help soothe the itchiness and discomfort associated with bug bites. It offers a refreshing and calming effect on the affected area.
  • Anti-inflammatory effects: Eucalyptus essential oil contains compounds such as eucalyptol that possess anti-inflammatory properties. These properties can help reduce inflammation, redness, and swelling caused by bug bites, promoting faster healing and relieving discomfort.
  • Analgesic properties: The oil has mild analgesic properties that can help alleviate pain and discomfort from bug bites. It can provide temporary relief by numbing the area and reducing the sensation of pain or itching.
  • Antiseptic and antimicrobial activity: Eucalyptus essential oil has natural antiseptic properties, which can help prevent infection in bug bites. Its antimicrobial activity helps inhibit the growth of bacteria and other microorganisms, reducing the risk of secondary infections.

Basil

Basil essential oil can provide relief for bug bites due to its anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antiseptic properties. Here’s how basil essential oil can help:

  • Anti-inflammatory effects: Basil essential oil contains compounds such as eugenol and linalool that exhibit anti-inflammatory properties. When applied to bug bites, it can help reduce inflammation, swelling, and redness, providing relief from discomfort.
  • Analgesic properties: Basil essential oil has analgesic properties, which means it can help alleviate pain and discomfort associated with bug bites. It can provide a soothing sensation and relieve the itching or burning sensation.
  • Antiseptic and antimicrobial activity: Basil essential oil possesses natural antiseptic properties, which can help prevent infection in bug bites. It has antimicrobial activity that helps inhibit the growth of bacteria and other microorganisms, reducing the risk of secondary infections.
  • Cooling and calming effect: Basil essential oil has a refreshing and cooling effect when applied to the skin, which can help soothe the irritation caused by bug bites. It can provide a calming sensation and relieve itching.
chamomile essential oil for bug bites
CHAMOMILE ESSENTIAL OIL

eucalyptus essential oil for bug bites
EUCALYPTUS ESSENTIAL OIL

basil essential oil for bug bites
BASIL HOLY ORGANIC ESSENTIAL OIL

Personal Testimony

One of the first times we really put this herbal bug bite remedy to the test was when a yellow jacket got a hold of my daughter’s arm. Of course there were screams and tears, and if you’ve ever been stung by one you understand. We immediately applied this herbal bug bite salve and it took away her pain instantly. No more tears. No more screaming. Which really is an amazing thing when it comes to a four year old and any kind of owie. I was actually a little surprised that a herbal combination I came up with actually worked that efficiently! I grabbed my camera and took a series of pictures to document her bite and the amazing way the salve performed.

bug bite salve

After just 15 minutes the inflammation and redness was gone and after another hour it was like nothing ever happened! We got the same results a few weeks later when the yellow jackets got my husband. He even went as far as to call me a herbal genius (I don’t know if I would go that far but I am pretty proud of this recipe).

bug bite cream

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Now armed with this knowledge, it’s time to take action and create your own herbal bug bite remedies. Harness the healing potential of nature by experimenting with different combinations, infusions, or topical applications. Explore the world of herbal remedies and discover the ones that work best for you and your unique needs.

Hey Beautiful! I’m Tara, garden enthusiasts, keeper of chickens, herbal homesteader and stay at home mom of 3 tiny humans and a sourdough starter named Ma. I love teaching others how to live a self-sufficient and sustainable life through homesteading, scratch cooking, and remembering to live barefoot, wild and free!

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